«Cellular and humoral functional responses after BNT162b2 mRNA vaccination differ longitudinally between naive and subjects recovered from COVID-19»
– Cell Reports –
We have analyzed BNT162b2 vaccine-induced immune responses in naive subjects and individuals recovered from coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), both soon after (14 days) and later after (almost 8 months) vaccination. Plasma spike (S)-specific immunoglobulins peak after one vaccine shot in individuals recovered from COVID-19, while a second dose is needed in naive subjects, although the latter group shows reduced levels all along the analyzed period. Despite how the neutralization capacity against severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) mirrors this behavior early after vaccination, both groups show comparable neutralizing antibodies and S-specific B cell levels late post-vaccination. When studying cellular responses, naive individuals exhibit higher SARS-CoV-2-specific cytokine production, CD4+ T cell activation, and proliferation than do individuals recovered from COVID-19, with patent inverse correlations between humoral and cellular variables early post-vaccination. However, almost 8 months post-vaccination, SARS-CoV-2-specific responses are comparable between both groups. Our data indicate that a previous history of COVID-19 differentially determines the functional T and B cell-mediated responses to BNT162b2 vaccination over time.